NORTH FORSTH – Authorities have released the name of the 13-year-old girl who died Saturday afternoon following a two-vehicle wreck at Martin and Shadburn Roads in northeastern Forsyth County.
The Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office identified the teenager as Kayla Pirkle.
According to the sheriff’s office, Pirkle was a passenger in a 1998 Acura TL driven by her 19-year-old sister, Kori Pirkle, when it was struck broadside by an F-250 Ford pickup about 1:30 p.m.
The Pirkles were traveling east on Martin Road, a well-traveled rural road about a half mile east of Ga. 400, when the Acura turned left at Shadburn and into the path of the pickup, the sheriff’s office said.
The pickup, driven by Jason Kenney of Cumming, struck the Acura on the passenger side, right where Kayla Pirkle was sitting, according to the sheriff’s office.
Kayla Pirkle was flown to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta, where she later died from her injuries, according to the sheriff’s office.
Kori Pirkle was taken by ambulance to North Fulton Hospital, where she was reportedly treated for minor injuries and released.
Neither Kenney nor his two passengers were injured, the sheriff’s office said.
No charges have been filed and the collision remains under investigation.
According to the Forsyth County school system, Kayla Pirkle was a seventh-grader at Little Mill Middle school, where a vigil was held for her Monday morning.
Principal Connie McCrary said the school will have counselors on hand throughout the week “for those who are in need.”
“With sad hearts our students and staff gathered this morning prior to the start of school to mourn the loss of Kayla Pirkle,” McCrary said. “The Fellowship of Christian Athletes organized the vigil and shared stories of love about Kayla.
“She was a bright and loving soul, and will be deeply missed among our school family. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family during this time of great sorrow.”
The fatality was the first of 2014 on Forsyth County roads, according to the sheriff’s office.
“This is our first fatality since November 2013,” said Doug Rainwater, a spokesman for the agency. “It’s unusual, and it’s very unusual we go five straight months, especially around the holiday season.
“I can’t contribute it to anything. You can’t contribute it to good weather, bad weather or people paying attention. Look at Saturday, the sky was blue, the sun was out, so there’s really nothing you can contribute it to.”
At least one person in the area pointed to the intersection itself as a possible factor.
The manager of White Oak Academy, a day care at the corner of Martin and Shadburn, said Monday that she has seen several crashes at the crossing over the years.
“Every time there’s a wreck there, I call and ask [authorities] when they’re going to put a light there,” Cora Henry said.
Staff writer Jennifer Sami contributed to this report.